Tutor profile: Ashley M.
Subject: Library and Information Science
I'm not sure how to find good sources for my research paper on World War II. How can I find good information available online for free?
First and foremost, let's narrow down your focus a bit. Doing a paper on all of World War II would take a long time! Are you wanting to look at a specific person, an event, or the causes/effects? Once you've narrowed down your focus a bit more, it'll be easier to find good sources. Do you have a library card to your local or school library? If so, then you most likely have access to their online databases. Take a look at ones such as EBSCO and do a keyword search for your narrowed topic. You'll see academic articles come up--perhaps even some books. Generally, as long as an article is peer-reviewed, you'll find it to be a good article to use. If you'd prefer to see books, you can do a keyword search on the online catalog for your local library. If you don't mind books that are out of copyright, Google Books can find online books that you can use.
My class is reading "Jane Eyre" and I need to write a paper that supports the idea that Jane grew as a character throughout the book. I'm not sure where to start!
The best way to see if a character has grown throughout a book is simply to take a look at her at the beginning and at the end! In the beginning of Jane Eyre, for instance, we see that she is a young girl who is easily spooked and quite influenced by others. In the end of the book, she is an adult who makes her own decisions. Just by judging those two elements, do you think that she is the same person in the beginning of the novel as when it ends? Definitely not! So already we can see that there is evidence to support a change. So, to write a good essay, you should have some well-supported evidence on hand. What things did Jane Eyre do over the course of the novel that showed that she was growing as a person? Once you've got a few of those instances, you can use them as the body of your essay. Each instance would be a separate section. In each section, explain the action clearly and then explain how it shows growth. Once you take an essay and look at the smaller sections in this way, the essay becomes easier to write!
I need to present a report to my class on a complex topic. I'm not so sure that they will understand as there's a lot of jargon and technical aspects to this topic. How can I go about breaking down a complex topic so that the average person would understand?
Without knowing specifically what your topic is, let's talk about what would be a good practice in general. First, let's identify just what concepts you think might be too complex for a lay audience. I'd pick the areas that are most technical, most specific to experts in that field. Once you've got those areas identified, let's pick out some key terms that a person needs to know in order to understand those areas. Can you explain those terms in a way that makes them easier to understand? If so, go ahead and include those brief explanations in your presentation; if not, let's not use those specific terms. Instead, go ahead and try to explain the topic without using the jargon. In short: break down all aspects that you think might be too difficult for someone to understand. Break them down to the lowest level, if need be, and put that into your presentation. Finally, let me just point out: never underestimate the power of a well-placed image! If you find a good image, chart, or graph that can explain in images what you are trying to say in words, go ahead and add that! Not everyone is a auditory learner--some may find that image more helpful!
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